Southside Wolfpack youth football team, cheerleaders raise $30K to go to national championship

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Southside Wolfpack youth football team and its cheerleaders are on a quest for a national title, and now they can travel to compete for it.

This group of 12-13-year-olds have dominated their respective fields this season, but they needed help getting to the national competition in Florida.

They got an outpouring of it.

The teams met at 63rd and Stoney Island Monday to announce they had reached their fundraising goal for $30,000 to bring the football team, cheerleaders and coaches to Florida.

The money came from area businesses and donations through a a GoFundMe page.

"The experience would be, it would be a very fun experience, especially for us boys, to get to go out of state to go into hotel rooms and experience what it's like to be at the next level football," Wolfpack running back Jayvon Anderson told ABC7 over the weekend.

The cheerleaders have qualified for their third appearance at nationals.

"Oh man, it's amazing our community has our back," said cheer coach Tonya Coleman. "It's so much negativity out here and to let them see there's still positivity in the community, and they support and they love us."

The excellence goes far off the field, too, with this group of young athletes.

"I mean, we have all our young people; we have 140 football players and 60 cheerleaders, and our average grade point average is a 3.1," said Coach Ernest Radcliffe.

The plan is to host some kind of sendoff before this South Side program hits the sky in its quest for a national title.
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